This morning the Italian Guardia di Finanza (FinanceP) seized €28.7m (some $32m) and certain real estate properties in Torre del Greco and Pescocostanzo in Naples belonging to Giuseppe Mauro Rizzo and Michele Bottiglieri, heads respectively of the shipping companies RBD Armatori and Michele Bottiglieri Armatore.
The legal action has been carried upon the request of the Torre Annunziata Court following a tax audit on the company Rizzo Bottiglieri de Carlini Armatori Spa where relevant financial transactions with foreign companies, most of them based in Luxembourg, emerged in the past.
According to the prosecutor Alessandro Pennasilico, all these companies refer to the same owners and he alleges that €37m ($41.5m) in undeclared income may have been funneled away in Luxembourg companies. For this same reason, a seizure of €11.5m ($12.9m) together with some properties in Milan, Capri and Ischia had already been seized in June 2014 from the same Italian shipowners.
The Luxembourg-based Luxdynamic is the holding company of the RBD Group, while another company called Marine Trade is supposed to be the vehicle entity trough which Giuseppe Rizzo and Michele Bottiglieri used to undertake speculative investments in forward freight agreements.
The Marine Trade company is accused to have taken away from Italian taxation an amount of €120m (some $134m) for the fiscal years 2006-2008.